We at the Business Journal are constantly hearing from small business owners and chief executives about how fortunate they and their employees are to work in Long Beach. Those who have been operating in the city for years recognize the significant improvements that have occurred over the past several decades – especially as city staff implement new technology that makes it easier for businesspeople to own and operate a business, and to quickly get answers to questions.
These services have bolstered an organically growing local economy with an undeniable momentum. Combined, private and public investments are revitalizing our city. To safeguard the crucial city services such as public safety that are necessary to support ongoing economic vitality, it is essential that Long Beach voters pass Measure M on June 5 to ensure the funding for these services remains stable.
The Long Beach Economic Development Department has created numerous tools for both existing Long Beach businesses and for entrepreneurs looking to set up shop in the city. Free digital tools such as BizPort and My Sidewalk make it easier to navigate the process of opening a business in Long Beach, while a variety of small business loan and incentive services help ease financial strain on business owners so that they can successfully grow their enterprises. By providing these resources to the business community, city leadership has demonstrated their commitment to growing Long Beach’s reputation as a business-friendly city.
With the work the City of Long Beach has completed thanks to funding generated by the voter-approved Measure A, city leadership has shown that they can be trusted to keep their promises. The funds generated by the sales tax increase approved with the passage of Measure A in 2016 have been poured into improving miles of streets and sidewalks, and hiring more police officers and fire fighters, just as the mayor and city management promised. As a result, residents and businesses alike are benefiting from the improvements, with many more planned in the years to come.
Measure M is a city charter amendment that was placed on the June 5th ballot by the Long Beach City Council to explicitly authorize and affirm the transfer of surplus city utility revenues to the general fund to support services such as police, fire, and 911 paramedic and other general government services. These transfers have been used to support general city services for over 60 years. But if voters do not act, the transfers will cease, resulting in a significant loss of revenue – as much as $18 million annually – to the general fund and putting these critical resources at risk.
The City of Long Beach has repaid the trust of its residents and businesses by keeping its promises and acting in good faith, and the benefits are plain to see. To maintain the vital services supporting our growing economy, the Business Journal is confident in saying: Vote Yes on Measure M.